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170* Rule


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1 hour ago, Snakebite said:

The lack of assigning a Loading Table Officer is IMO the NUMBER 1 safety problem in the game today. People have loaded guns and are very often sweeping someone at the loading table. It is a SDQ to fail to follow loading table procedures, and the LTO job is to CHECK YOUR GUNS. I am absolutely astounded that so many LARGE matches do not follow the rules in regards to the Loading Tables. The lack of a Loading table officer is IMO a much bigger issue than splitting hairs on the 170.

I have never seen a loading table officer at any match I've ever been to. I've also never seen anyone shot or injured there either. Probably just a coincidence. 

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2 minutes ago, Redwood Kid said:

I have never seen a loading table officer at any match I've ever been to. I've also never seen anyone shot or injured there either. Probably just a coincidence. 

I have never seen anyone hurt either. However, I know of two instances (close calls) where shooters at the LT fired live rounds out of their rifles when closing them to load.

 

IMO, there was nothing a LTO could/would have done to prevent this. The ULTO is the position that needs to be manned with alert individuals.

 

I also know about a situation with a LTO where the shooter loaded 6 in one pistol and 4 in the other. :o

 

I have earned the SDQ for leaving the LT with a cocked rifle once and there was a LTO on duty.

 

Bottom line for me is that LTOs are overrated and too many ULTs are manned with inattentive individuals.:ph34r:

 

 

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1 hour ago, Snakebite said:

The lack of assigning a Loading Table Officer is IMO the NUMBER 1 safety problem in the game today. People have loaded guns and are very often sweeping someone at the loading table. It is a SDQ to fail to follow loading table procedures, and the LTO job is to CHECK YOUR GUNS. I am absolutely astounded that so many LARGE matches do not follow the rules in regards to the Loading Tables. The lack of a Loading table officer is IMO a much bigger issue than splitting hairs on the 170.

 

Out here in the Big Empty our posses are nearly always too small to have an LTO. Sometimes, with only 3 or 4 shooters we don't have an ULTO either.

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The LTO and ULTO should be attentive. Unfortunatly it is not uncommon to find someone there that is just looking for a place to sit. 

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10 hours ago, Allie Mo, SASS No. 25217 said:

I have never seen anyone hurt either. However, I know of two instances (close calls) where shooters at the LT fired live rounds out of their rifles when closing them to load.

 

IMO, there was nothing a LTO could/would have done to prevent this. The ULTO is the position that needs to be manned with alert individuals.

I agree, that there was little that a LTO could have done. But... there is also little that a T.O. can do to stop someone from breaking the 170 either. Just stand back and watch the loading table from afar at any match. I think that you will see many shooters load their handguns and then sweep the next shooter in line with a loaded gun as they put them away. To me, that act is much more dangerous than sweeping someone re-holstering an empty gun on the stage.  I believe that a LTO's presents to at least speak up can go a long way toward getting folks to be more careful. No, I have not seen or hear of anyone being shot at the LT... but that is also the case of anywhere else on the Firing line... that does not justify not staffing the position.

 

I also know about a situation with a LTO where the shooter loaded 6 in one pistol and 4 in the other. :o

It is the shooter's responsibility to do it right, and show the LTO. But yes.. things like that do happen. I think that they are less likely to happen when doing it under observation.

 

I have earned the SDQ for leaving the LT with a cocked rifle once and there was a LTO on duty.

Again... it is the shooter's responsibility to do it right, but I have seen many times where the LTO saved the shooter by reminding them about the hammer. It is no different than the T.O. failing to coach the shooter and the shooter ending up getting a penalty... it is the shooter's fault, not the T.O. 

 

Bottom line for me is that LTOs are overrated and too many ULTs are manned with inattentive individuals.:ph34r:

Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Rules is rules, and just how closely they are followed is/has always been a point of contention. Some of my opinions in earlier post on this thread indicate that I believe is cutting some slack when possible. So as I am sure you are aware, I am not always a "Letter of the Law" guy. (There have been some who didn't agree with my opinion in those post) Our posse had a LTO officer on every stage at the State Match because I believe it is an important position.  IMO a good LTO who takes the job seriously and does the job as per the rule book can be a very big asset. They not only can help provide double checking for a live round under the hammer, but can help the shooter in other ways too. They can also help the confused shooter get things straighten out before proceeding to the stage. I used to see/hear Posse leaders tell the posse to check the person in front of them at the loading table... well, in the absence of a LTO, I guess that is better than nothing... it does at least get the shooter to put the hammer down on a empty chamber of the pistols, but the fact is..... I don't even hear or see that taking place any longer at many/most matches. When I ask the shooter behind me at a big match in Feb, they responded that "We don't do that here". So, you are not alone in your opinion that a LTO has little real value, many folks feel the same way.  But that not withstanding, I never fail to have someone check my guns and I never sweep anyone at the loading table with my pistols.

 

 

 

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If people watch the guns, the rule isn't that hard in the majority of cases.  If the gun hits the 180 or beyond, they broke the rule.  The main issue is that we have to focus on the gun.  That is  the rules tell the R.O. to WATCH the GUNS.

 

Yes sometimes a fast shooter is a little harder to catch, but it is still possible.  And most experienced shooters have practiced and shot enough to be safe nearly all the time.  But we still need to watch.

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One issue I see with the 170 is when we shoot on a stage with a building.  Often times the spotters want to spot on the same boardwalk or walkway that the shooter is shooting from.  If that is the case, too often the spotter is already inside the 180 plane.  Obviously not good but as we get "involved" we may forget that spotters need to be a little bit behind the line.  The shooter has to be a foot or two back from the building.  And I've seen spotters leaning ON the building for fence.

 

Another issue is that people think that if they can see the muzzle, that the 170 has been broken.  Take our your pistol, make certain it is empty.  Then place it at about 160 or even 150 degrees - you can clearly see the hole in the muzzle.  Remember that - and stand back - just to be sure.

 

And be willing to politely warn a shooter if he or she got close to the 170.

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1 minute ago, Marauder SASS #13056 said:

If people watch the guns, the rule isn't that hard in the majority of cases.  If the gun hits the 180 or beyond, they broke the rule.  The main issue is that we have to focus on the gun.  That is  the rules tell the R.O. to WATCH the GUNS.

 

Yes sometimes a fast shooter is a little harder to catch, but it is still possible.  And most experienced shooters have practiced and shot enough to be safe nearly all the time.  But we still need to watch.

Exactly!  How many times do you see the TO disagreeing with the counters on misses or is giving the scorekeeper the number without surveying the counters?  If the TO is watching the shooter and the gun as he/she should be, he/she is in no position to determine misses.  

 

If the TO is watching the gun, and I am speaking about revolvers here, he/she should notice the empty revolver heading back to the holster and whether the muzzle breaks the 170* uprange prior to entering the holster or not.  If the revolver is close to vertical, no call but when it is clearly past the vertical uprange, then the TO must address it in the manner he/she is most comfortable with.  

 

The same thing goes with the shooter walking to the line.  The TO must be watching the shooter and if his/her weapons are past vertical uprange, the situation must be addressed.  Some slack is in order on a case by case basis as Snakebite suggested but repeat offenders need to be addressed, harshly if necessary. 

 

There was a case at a So Cal club a few months ago where a shooter went to holster a cocked and loaded revolver.  The gun went off, shot through his holster, and ricocheted off an ore cart with other shooters close by.  This shooter has been cut slack many times in the past but was not improving so he was permanently banned from the club.  Harsh but absolutely necessary.  Had that have happened with a weapon pointed at the shooter's lower torso, then the outcome would have been much different.

 

When I TO, I watch the shooter from the time I call him/her up from the LT.  As he/she is staging weapons, I look them over for cocked hammers, closed actions, etc.  During the course of fire, I sub-consciously count the number of times the shooter fires each rifle and revolver in case the shooter has a malfunction, jacks a round out, etc. but focus on the weapon and shooter movement primarily.  I watch the SG as well but try to position myself to watch for targets left up to alert the shooter to re-engage.  

 

As a result of many comments and suggestions on this thread, I am going to up my game to address rule violations.  Again, as Snakebite suggested, if the call is marginal, I will bring it to the shooter's attention and/or watch for repeat violations if necessary to ensure I saw what I thought I saw.  If it is a clear violation, the violation will be called for what it is.

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46 minutes ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

Exactly!  How many times do you see the TO disagreeing with the counters on misses or is giving the scorekeeper the number without surveying the counters?  If the TO is watching the shooter and the gun as he/she should be, he/she is in no position to determine misses.  

 

If the TO is watching the gun, and I am speaking about revolvers here, he/she should notice the empty revolver heading back to the holster and whether the muzzle breaks the 170* uprange prior to entering the holster or not.  If the revolver is close to vertical, no call but when it is clearly past the vertical uprange, then the TO must address it in the manner he/she is most comfortable with.  

 

The same thing goes with the shooter walking to the line.  The TO must be watching the shooter and if his/her weapons are past vertical uprange, the situation must be addressed.  Some slack is in order on a case by case basis as Snakebite suggested but repeat offenders need to be addressed, harshly if necessary. 

 

There was a case at a So Cal club a few months ago where a shooter went to holster a cocked and loaded revolver.  The gun went off, shot through his holster, and ricocheted off an ore cart with other shooters close by.  This shooter has been cut slack many times in the past but was not improving so he was permanently banned from the club.  Harsh but absolutely necessary.  Had that have happened with a weapon pointed at the shooter's lower torso, then the outcome would have been much different.

 

When I TO, I watch the shooter from the time I call him/her up from the LT.  As he/she is staging weapons, I look them over for cocked hammers, closed actions, etc.  During the course of fire, I sub-consciously count the number of times the shooter fires each rifle and revolver in case the shooter has a malfunction, jacks a round out, etc. but focus on the weapon and shooter movement primarily.  I watch the SG as well but try to position myself to watch for targets left up to alert the shooter to re-engage.  

 

As a result of many comments and suggestions on this thread, I am going to up my game to address rule violations.  Again, as Snakebite suggested, if the call is marginal, I will bring it to the shooter's attention and/or watch for repeat violations if necessary to ensure I saw what I thought I saw.  If it is a clear violation, the violation will be called for what it is.

The 170/180 does not apply when a shooter is walking to the line. Also, how do you decide who gets to break the rules without penalty and who does not? I was under the impression that the rules applied equally to ALL shooters. 

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2 hours ago, Smokestack said:

The 170/180 does not apply when a shooter is walking to the line. Also, how do you decide who gets to break the rules without penalty and who does not? I was under the impression that the rules applied equally to ALL shooters. 

If you are certain... BET YOUR LIFE on it, then do it.... if you are not sure enough to make that bet, then DON'T.

 

Snakebite

 

I'm just saying Be certain before you nail someone. 

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1 hour ago, Smokestack said:

The 170/180 does not apply when a shooter is walking to the line. Also, how do you decide who gets to break the rules without penalty and who does not? I was under the impression that the rules applied equally to ALL shooters. 

So the shooter can point loaded guns uprange when walking to the line?  Not where I went to school cowboy.  When I took in RO classes, the 170* applied from the LT to the ULT.  The only time the 170* doesn't apply is behind the line when you are handling guns at your cart.   

 

The discretion in making a penalty call or giving a warning by the TO applies when the violation may not be totally clear such as being @ 180* instead of 170*.  It's that gray area that the TO has some latitude in addressing close calls or cutting some slack as Snakebite mentions.  This is an area that is clearly borderline and within the TO's ability to "school" a shooter as you  pointed out in a previous post.  As long as the TO applies this logic to all shooters, he/she is applying the rules equally so no one shooter is getting an advantage.

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1 hour ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

So the shooter can point loaded guns uprange when walking to the line?  Not where I went to school cowboy.  When I took in RO classes, the 170* applied from the LT to the ULT.  The only time the 170* doesn't apply is behind the line when you are handling guns at your cart.   

 

The discretion in making a penalty call or giving a warning by the TO applies when the violation may not be totally clear such as being @ 180* instead of 170*.  It's that gray area that the TO has some latitude in addressing close calls or cutting some slack as Snakebite mentions.  This is an area that is clearly borderline and within the TO's ability to "school" a shooter as you  pointed out in a previous post.  As long as the TO applies this logic to all shooters, he/she is applying the rules equally so no one shooter is getting an advantage.

Where is the 170 when the loading and unloading tables are not ON the actual firing line but are well behind it ...... facing side berms?

 

Generally straight up or close to it is best.......pointing down range may not always be safe when walking from the loading table to the actual firing line if the loading table is facing a side berm. It is quite possible for there to be folks "downrange of the shooter but uprange from the actual firing line".

 

There is a difference between the "Firing LIne" and the "Actual Firing Line" or there would not be this reference in the shooters handbook about AD's

 

Quote

Any discharge away from the actual firing line shall result in a Match Disqualification.

 

Stan

 

 

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1 hour ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

So the shooter can point loaded guns uprange when walking to the line?  Not where I went to school cowboy.  When I took in RO classes, the 170* applied from the LT to the ULT.  The only time the 170* doesn't apply is behind the line when you are handling guns at your cart.   

 

The discretion in making a penalty call or giving a warning by the TO applies when the violation may not be totally clear such as being @ 180* instead of 170*.  It's that gray area that the TO has some latitude in addressing close calls or cutting some slack as Snakebite mentions.  This is an area that is clearly borderline and within the TO's ability to "school" a shooter as you  pointed out in a previous post.  As long as the TO applies this logic to all shooters, he/she is applying the rules equally so no one shooter is getting an advantage.

I misunderstood the cutting some slack statement then. If the rule was just almost broken, I would not consider talking to the shooter cutting them any slack. I thought you meant that sometimes depending on the situation, you would apply a penalty and sometimes not, even if the line were crossed both times. I see now that this is not what you meant. I agree with what Stan posted above in regards to moving to or from the loading/unloading tables. The 170 often does not work in that situation and that is why the rules specify that muzzles be pointed in a safe direction at that time. 

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This is from a July 5,2011 Post by Palewolf

 

Quote

The 170º rule – Common Sense Approach Posted 05 July 2011 - 01:16 PM by PaleWolf Brunelle

 

The 170º rule, by definition, DOES NOT always apply to/from/at the loading/unloading tables. This is due to the wide variations in range/stage setups...it does on some ranges, if they are on a common firing line with the stage itself (e.g. LT / STAGE1 / ULT...LT / STAGE2 / ULT...).

 

(Note: The 170-degree safety rule means the muzzle of the firearm must always be straight down range +/- 85 degrees in any direction. If a competitor “comes close” to breaking the 180-degree safety plane, the 170-degree safety rule has been violated, and the competitor is at fault.) SHB p.25/RO1 p.18

 

170º Safety Rule - means the muzzle of the firearm must always be pointed down range +/- 85 degrees in any direction. RO1 "Glossary of Terms" p.29

 

J) Once the stage begins, the Timer Operator stays within arm’s length of the competitor until the stage is finished. The Timer Operator then immediately announces the stage time to the shooter. Only after revolvers are holstered and long guns are action opened, muzzles pointed in a safe direction, and the shooter is heading towards the unloading table does the Timer Operator, declare “Range is Clear” and conveys the time to the Score Keeper in a loud, clear voice. RO1 p.7

 

4. “Muzzle up” Please move to the Unloading Table” should be stated at the end of a shooting sequence. Often the competitor stops thinking—after all, his shooting problem is finished! He simply needs a gentle reminder of what to do next. RO1 p.11

 

2. Long guns will have their actions open with chambers and magazines empty and muzzles pointed in a safe direction when being carried to and from the designated loading and unloading areas for each stage. ...The muzzles of all long guns must be maintained in a safe direction (generally “up” and slightly down range), even when returning to the unloading table. RO1 p.14

 

The "problem" seems to be the parenthetical "generally "up" and slightly down range" as a definition of suggested "safe direction"... It should be obvious that the reference to "slightly down range" applies primarily DURING the stage engagement...if the muzzle of a firearm is pointed straight UP during the 'course of fire' (i.e. @ 180º), the shooter is in violation of the 170º rule. Once the stage has ended & the shooter is headed to the ULT, there are often personnel DOWN range (e.g. setting targets/picking brass)...at that point, "slightly downrange" might not necessarily be a "best practice" (depending on range/stage layout).

 

COMMON SENSE should be used to determine the safest direction to point muzzles when moving from the LT to the stage & from the stage to the ULT. UP has already been determined to be considered acceptable. The PRIMARY consideration is to avoid SWEEPING anyone with the muzzle of ANY firearm at ANY time.

 

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"COMMON SENSE should be used to determine the safest direction to point muzzles when moving from the LT to the stage & from the stage to the ULT. UP has already been determined to be considered acceptable. The PRIMARY consideration is to avoid SWEEPING anyone with the muzzle of ANY firearm at ANY time."

 

+++ 100%

 

Snakebite

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5 hours ago, Snakebite said:

"COMMON SENSE should be used to determine the safest direction to point muzzles when moving from the LT to the stage & from the stage to the ULT. UP has already been determined to be considered acceptable. The PRIMARY consideration is to avoid SWEEPING anyone with the muzzle of ANY firearm at ANY time."

 

+++ 100%

 

Snakebite

Hmmm...

 

"common" = everyday, regular occurences, nothing out of the ordinary.

"sense" = ability to assimilate knowledge into action without prior experience.  Often related to intelligence.

 

What level of intelligence do we see most often?  Something that is better described as SHEER STUPIDITY!  I don't want our TOs displaying "common sense"!  I prefer TOs that demonstrate a higher standard than that.  I want TOs that can, do and will demonstrate they possess "UNCOMMON GOOD SENSE"!

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8 hours ago, Santa Fe River Stan,36999L said:

Where is the 170 when the loading and unloading tables are not ON the actual firing line but are well behind it ...... facing side berms?

Every range will have a variable when it comes to LT and ULT 170*s based on how the tables are set up.  The added attraction is that at some ranges, using a full 170* plane can put other participants downrange and past the edge of the berm at risk.  Perhaps the 170* for LT/ULT is far too generous in these cases and where a 90* plane set on a 45* axis should be used.  The bottom line is, the weapons should be pointed solidly at the berm when loading/unloading and in a mostly perpendicular plane to the berm when holstering.

Generally straight up or close to it is best.......pointing down range may not always be safe when walking from the loading table to the actual firing line if the loading table is facing a side berm. It is quite possible for there to be folks "downrange of the shooter but uprange from the actual firing line".

I agree.  My example with long guns is when the shooter is not pointing the weapons straight up or slightly downrange, it is when loaded long guns are clearly pointed uprange as they move which is never correct.  If the TO is watching the shooter walk from the LT to the firing line, a simple "Watch your muzzle" is in order when the barrels are about to over center uprange.

 

 

Stan

 

 

 

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8 hours ago, Smokestack said:

I misunderstood the cutting some slack statement then. If the rule was just almost broken, I would not consider talking to the shooter cutting them any slack. I thought you meant that sometimes depending on the situation, you would apply a penalty and sometimes not, even if the line were crossed both times. I see now that this is not what you meant. I agree with what Stan posted above in regards to moving to or from the loading/unloading tables. The 170 often does not work in that situation and that is why the rules specify that muzzles be pointed in a safe direction at that time. 

I apologize for the lack of clarity.  It's kinda like this, you address two different shooters for suspected borderline violations of the 170* verbally.  One shooter listens and does some little something and finishes the match successfully without anymore 170* issues.  The other shooter shoots the next stage correctly then reverts back to pushing the 170* plane by his choice.  By the next stage, this shooter clearly is behond 180* so he gets a SDQ.  His fault, he was warned about his actions yet repeated them.  He earned the penalty and went home mad.

 

I agree that moving to/from the firing line is a conundrum when assessing 170* violations and/or whether the participant is keeping his weapons pointed in a safe direction.  My point has always been, uprange has never been considered a safe direction and where a shooter should be addressed.

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All y'all are way over-thinking this 170º thing as it applies to moving too and from the firing line.  There are times when being clearly inside the 170º with the muzzle would be MORE unsafe than if the muzzle is straight up, or even what might be considered "up-range".  Moving from the loading table to the firing line is clearly when you need to be the most diligent ensuring the shooter SAFELY carries their long guns to their stage positions.  And since EVERY time we move with firearms in hand adds to our muscle memory and establishes habits, movement from the time a firearm leaves its cart to the time it returns to the cart it needs to be handled safely and with due diligence to muzzle direction control.  To paraphrase that Judge from the last century... I know "unsafe" when I see it... putting a definition into simple terms is damned near impossible, but... the 170º provides a starting point.  My personal criteria is... is the shooter exercising enough control of their firearm to avoid sweeping ANYONE, anywhere?

 

Penalizing someone because their muzzle went from 165º to 179º as they pass from the firing line to the ULT between brass pickers and the folks rushing forward to reset knockdowns... IMNSHO is a clear violation RO Rule #4.  Trying to empirically state "THIS IS UNSAFE", or "IT MUST BE THIS WAY", just gives me the impression that one lacks the discerning nature it takes to differentiate between two similar situations, where in one instance an act might be deemed "safe", yet, in others, the same act would be clearly "unsafe".

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A shooter moving from the firing line to the ULT outside the 170* when necessary has never been an issue for me.  Yes the 170* is still in effect but due to some range layouts, may be impractical.  The short guns are in holsters with the long gun actions open.  All guns are safe.  Common sense tells us this is a no call.

 

My point in starting this thread was specifically for loaded long guns while moving to the firing line and for all guns when in hand or staged during the shooting string.  The 170* was designed so no weapon may sweep anyone at anytime.  That includes the shooter when holstering a short gun before the muzzle enters the holster.  

 

My examples were:

  • When a shooter switches from strong to support hand away from the body when holstering a crossdraw
  • Drawing on the move from a crossdraw when moving towards the support side
  • A shooter pointing loaded long guns uprange when traveling from the LT to the firing line.  

Each of these examples may be the result of muscle memory ingrained after much practice but as simply as trained into muscle memory, it can be modified.

 

Examples:

  • When switching hands, keep the muzzle vertical until over the holster then stab it in instead of angling the muzzle towards the holster while returning it to leather.  Most of what I have noticed is this is happening when the muzzle is still 6-8" away from the holster after switching hands while turning the muzzle vertical.  It simply gets turned too far in the effort to get it back in leather quickly.  Changing a slight angle in the wrist when holding the gun is a learned response with very little effort and keeps the shooter within the 170* rule.
  • Drawing on the move safely while moving towards the support side has always been difficult since many shooters draw one revolver first every time.  This may be a case where perhaps the shooter should pull the strong side revolver first to begin the shooting string.  By the time he/she finishes the first revolver string, he/she is in a better position to draw the crossdraw within the 170* to finish.  This applies to strong side drawing as well.  When drawing the support side revolver, it is conceivable the muzzle would violate the 170* due to body posture as the shooter arrives at the shooting position before he/she turns towards the target.  Again this is a learned/trained response to ensure safety.
  • Most times the error in carrying loaded long guns pointed uprange is the lack of attention by the shooter due to outside influences whether fatigue, chatting, heat, etc.  When leaving the LT, the shooter must be on game with muzzle control being the first thing addressed as he/she moves out.  The TO can easily help here as he/she should be watching and can give the shooter a reminder if it appears he/she is going to point the weapons uprange.

Essentially folks, the 170* rule needs to be enforced effectively and uniformly with reasonable common sense caveats noted.  The Posse Marshal, RO's, and TO's must not be timid or complacent in addressing the 170* or other safety rules.  If the call ruins someone's chance at a championship run, so be it the same call made for a just for fun shooter who does the same exact thing.  None of the comments in this thread are to force changes that can't be easily accomplished by getting back to basics.  

 

We have discussed this issue productively, defiantly, and with apathy but I believe this type of lively 

discussion will result in a reassessment of the rules as we apply them as we play our game and move forward.  

 

See ya'll at the range.

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23 hours ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

So the shooter can point loaded guns uprange when walking to the line?  Not where I went to school cowboy.  When I took in RO classes, the 170* applied from the LT to the ULT.  The only time the 170* doesn't apply is behind the line when you are handling guns at your cart.   

 

The discretion in making a penalty call or giving a warning by the TO applies when the violation may not be totally clear such as being @ 180* instead of 170*.  It's that gray area that the TO has some latitude in addressing close calls or cutting some slack as Snakebite mentions.  This is an area that is clearly borderline and within the TO's ability to "school" a shooter as you  pointed out in a previous post.  As long as the TO applies this logic to all shooters, he/she is applying the rules equally so no one shooter is getting an advantage.

 

No offense intended, but the rules do change and/or get clarified.  That may have occurred since you last took an RO class, or this topic may not have been addressed.  

 

As Stan mentioned and the quote from PBC indicates the 170 degree rule doesn't always apply from the LT to the 'actual' firing line, particularly when you have bays set up such that the LT and ULT are pointed towards the side berms.  It's not uncommon at all for a shooter to pick his guns up from the LT and walk past several people before he gets to the actual firing line and stages his guns.  In those cases vertical is best and the 170 is not in affect.

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7 minutes ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

 The 170* was designed so no weapon  firearm may sweep anyone at anytime.  


  See ya'll at the range.

;) I agree, muzzle control is the key. The most common sweep I've seen is with the SXS, usually leaving the LT/ULT and the most at the gun cart. The shooter will bend to stow empties, or bend to pickup the rifle with the shotgun in hand already carried at an angle, or bend over to get ammo with the shotgun in hand already at an angle. At this point you can see that the SXS is clear cause you can see straight through the pipes:o. This is usually caused by the way they carry the SXS by the forearm, with the stock hanging almost parallel to the body. If you try to carry it muzzles straight up the action wants close. An ole' BP shooter showed me a way to carry the SXS nearly straight up without burning my hands on the pipes near the forearm. Good Luck:)

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29 minutes ago, Captain Bill Burt said:

 

No offense intended, but the rules do change and/or get clarified.  That may have occurred since you last took an RO class, or this topic may not have been addressed.  

No offense taken but I do read the TG minutes for rules clarifications/changes whenever posted and try to keep up to the rules changes as they happen.  The one thing this thread has driven home, the 170* rule at the firing line is alive and well.  When in doubt, I always ask for a local interpretation.

As Stan mentioned and the quote from PBC indicates the 170 degree rule doesn't always apply from the LT to the 'actual' firing line, particularly when you have bays set up such that the LT and ULT are pointed towards the side berms.  It's not uncommon at all for a shooter to pick his guns up from the LT and walk past several people before he gets to the actual firing line and stages his guns.  In those cases vertical is best and the 170 is not in affect.

I agree that vertical (180*) is best when moving from the LT to the firing line as a general rule and perhaps the 170* rule has evolved to the firing line only but my example was when the loaded long gun was carried @ over the 180* mark and clearly uprange.  I doubt the intent of the statement "The 170* rule doesn't always apply" was to allow for loaded long guns to be allowed to break the vertical and point uprange where the majority of the posse may be staged.  The 170* clearly applies at the LT to keep the LTO and other participants from being swept so there is the conundrum of where it applies and where it doesn't.  That might be a topic for the initial safety meeting at the beginning of a match.

 

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2 hours ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

 

 

 The 170* was designed so no weapon may sweep anyone at anytime.  That includes the shooter when holstering a short gun before the muzzle enters the holster.  

 

It is worth noting that there is no rule against or penalty for a shooter sweeping themselves. 

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15 minutes ago, Smokestack said:

It is worth noting that there is no rule against or penalty for a shooter sweeping themselves. 

Yep!

 

I think these discussions can be very helpful, but I think it's also important when participating to make sure that when you're stating what a rule is that your statement is supported by the rules, not a belief in what the rules are or should be.  The handbooks are easy to find.  

 

 

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1 hour ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

The 170* clearly applies at the LT to keep the LTO and other participants from being swept so there is the conundrum of where it applies and where it doesn't.  That might be a topic for the initial safety meeting at the beginning of a match.

I would not say the 170 clearly applies at the loading table.....in fact I would say that the 170 at most loading tables would put other participants in harms way.  The LTO or ULTO being prime examples. They usually stand/sit at one end of the table.......they puts them well into the 170 of a shooter loading/unloading considering it probably is only 1 inch in from the edge of the table. They are probably inside 145 degrees much less the 170.......

 

The primary rule in effect at the LT and ULT is DON'T SWEEP OTHER PEOPLE WITH A FIREARM regardless of any imaginary lines of safety.

 

I can assure you that if I am working a table and someone sweeps me they are not going to be able to justify it because they didn't break the 170.

 

Stan

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2 hours ago, Smokestack said:

It is worth noting that there is no rule against or penalty for a shooter sweeping themselves. 

The penalty is for breaking the 170*.  The rule was designed to keep participants from sweeping anyone at anytime.  In the process of breaking the 170* with the example I used, you may be sweeping yourself with the firearm.  As far as I know, anyone can also be the shooter thus my statement the shooter can't sweep himself either.

 

Having been near an AD where the shooter shot himself in the posterior when holstering his weapon, any action where the shooter has the sidearm pointed anywhere but vertical to his/her body when holstering is inherently dangerous.  Another AD happened when I was not there where the firearm was vertical.  The shooter was not injured but others close to him on the firing line were hit with shrapnel.  Perhaps having experienced potentially catastrophic events has made me more sensitive to the issue.

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2 hours ago, Santa Fe River Stan,36999L said:

 

I would not say the 170 clearly applies at the loading table.....in fact I would say that the 170 at most loading tables would put other participants in harms way.  The LTO or ULTO being prime examples. They usually stand/sit at one end of the table.......they puts them well into the 170 of a shooter loading/unloading considering it probably is only 1 inch in from the edge of the table. They are probably inside 145 degrees much less the 170.......

 

The primary rule in effect at the LT and ULT is DON'T SWEEP OTHER PEOPLE WITH A FIREARM regardless of any imaginary lines of safety.

 

I can assure you that if I am working a table and someone sweeps me they are not going to be able to justify it because they didn't break the 170.

 

Stan

The 170* does apply to the LT/ULT specifically adjacent to the firing line.  When the tables are away from the firing line, the rule must be modified based on physical layout.  In some cases, the shooter may only have 90* on a 45* plane to the table to be safe.  Does a limit apply, absolutely but may have to be limited based on setup and a common sense approach to safety.  I really doubt anyone would try to use the 170* to justify sweeping you.

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Jim, more than of the folks in this discussion are VERY familiar with what can happen when the firearm is not pointed in a safe direction.

 

I've seen a few incidents and others have seen and experienced even more - much more.

 

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3 minutes ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

The 170* does apply to the LT/ULT specifically adjacent to the firing line.  When the tables are away from the firing line, the rule must be modified based on physical layout.  In some cases, the shooter may only have 90* on a 45* plane to the table to be safe.  Does a limit apply, absolutely but may have to be limited based on setup and a common sense approach to safety.  I really doubt anyone would try to use the 170* to justify sweeping you.

 

18 minutes ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

The penalty is for breaking the 170*.  The rule was designed to keep participants from sweeping anyone at anytime.  In the process of breaking the 170* with the example I used, you may be sweeping yourself with the firearm.  As far as I know, anyone can also be the shooter thus my statement the shooter can't sweep himself either.

 

Having been near an AD where the shooter shot himself in the posterior when holstering his weapon, any action where the shooter has the sidearm pointed anywhere but vertical to his/her body when holstering is inherently dangerous.  Another AD happened when I was not there where the firearm was vertical.  The shooter was not injured but others close to him on the firing line were hit with shrapnel.  Perhaps having experienced potentially catastrophic events has made me more sensitive to the issue.

To say in one breath that 170º applies and in the next say that a shooter may only have 45º or 90º to remain safe tells me you understand the safety aspect, but are having trouble with the description.  When a shooter only has a 45º or 90º, or any amount less than a 170º arc to remain safe due to stage or table design & layout, in a nutshell, it means the 170º has "left the building." 

 

A shooter can sweep him/herself... and remain in the 170º while doing so.  Those among us suffering from a little "dun-lap disease" sometimes have to cock that pistol inward toward the hip to get the muzzle in the holster.   It's been said right here on the Wire many times by our own PWB, that there is NO RULE against a shooter sweeping themselves.  Sweep ANYONE else and regardless, whether the firearm is within the 170º or not, you've earned yourself a DQ.

 

Frankly, if I couldn't sweep myself I would be the most DQ'd shooter in the history of SASS. 

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39 minutes ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

The penalty is for breaking the 170*.  The rule was designed to keep participants from sweeping anyone at anytime.  In the process of breaking the 170* with the example I used, you may be sweeping yourself with the firearm.  As far as I know, anyone can also be the shooter thus my statement the shooter can't sweep himself either.

 

Having been near an AD where the shooter shot himself in the posterior when holstering his weapon, any action where the shooter has the sidearm pointed anywhere but vertical to his/her body when holstering is inherently dangerous.  Another AD happened when I was not there where the firearm was vertical.  The shooter was not injured but others close to him on the firing line were hit with shrapnel.  Perhaps having experienced potentially catastrophic events has made me more sensitive to the issue.

Jim this is the kind of statement I meant earlier.  There is NO penalty for sweeping yourself and it's quite easy to sweep yourself without breaking the 170.  Your statements about what is and is not safe are spot on, but are you going to call a 170 violation on a gunfighter who 'pumps' and points one of his guns at his other hand?  What about a shooter who shoots with a  left foot forward stance?  Shooter draws his pistol with his left hand and as he's bringing it up to pass it to his right hand it's pointed at that left foot, but the muzzle is still within the 170.  That's not a penalty even though he swept himself.

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8 minutes ago, Griff said:

 

To say in one breath that 170º applies and in the next say that a shooter may only have 45º or 90º to remain safe tells me you understand the safety aspect, but are having trouble with the description.  When a shooter only has a 45º or 90º, or any amount less than a 170º arc to remain safe due to stage or table design & layout, in a nutshell, it means the 170º has "left the building." 

Perhaps the 170* should be specific to the firing line and use a variable safety cone for LT/ULT.

A shooter can sweep him/herself... and remain in the 170º while doing so.  Those among us suffering from a little "dun-lap disease" sometimes have to cock that pistol inward toward the hip to get the muzzle in the holster.   It's been said right here on the Wire many times by our own PWB, that there is NO RULE against a shooter sweeping themselves.  Sweep ANYONE else and regardless, whether the firearm is within the 170º or not, you've earned yourself a DQ.

The only way I see your logic when holstering a strong side firearm.  When holstering a crossdraw, when canting the weapon towards your hip breaks the 170* as in my example.  I have watched many shooters with Dun Lop's disease that are able to stay within the 170* cone.

Frankly, if I couldn't sweep myself I would be the most DQ'd shooter in the history of SASS. 

 

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11 minutes ago, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

 

There is no need for a safety cone rule. The book already clearly states that muzzles must be pointed in a safe direction. The spokesman for the ROC has already taken the time to clarify it for those who may have trouble understanding it. I think what we have now works fine. 

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1 hour ago, Captain Bill Burt said:

Jim this is the kind of statement I meant earlier.  There is NO penalty for sweeping yourself and it's quite easy to sweep yourself without breaking the 170.  Your statements about what is and is not safe are spot on, but are you going to call a 170 violation on a gunfighter who 'pumps' and points one of his guns at his other hand?  What about a shooter who shoots with a  left foot forward stance?  Shooter draws his pistol with his left hand and as he's bringing it up to pass it to his right hand it's pointed at that left foot, but the muzzle is still within the 170.  That's not a penalty even though he swept himself.

I agree with your analogies of personal sweeps that are within the 170* however, when the firearm is pointed at your hip as you holster at an angle, it violates the 170* as the muzzle is in fact pointed uprange past the 170* when it is being done before the muzzle enters the holster.  Just because you are in front of the firearm doesn't negate the fact it has broken the 170*.  

 

Correct my if I am wrong but at one time, gunfighters weren't allowed to pump their sixguns.  Has that changed?

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1 hour ago, Smokestack said:

There is no need for a safety cone rule. The book already clearly states that muzzles must be pointed in a safe direction. The spokesman for the ROC has already taken the time to clarify it for those who may have trouble understanding it. I think what we have now works fine. 

I am not suggesting we need more rules but there are those who are having difficulty understanding what I am trying to say.  I was using the safety cone statement as a way to describe the need to be flexible at the LT/ULT when interpreting safety.  If we went by the book definition that the muzzle must be pointed in a safe direction, why do we have the 170* rule?  The rule simply gives specific parameters of what the ROC considers safe and leaves less to individual interpretation.

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